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AQA: Paper 2 Question 2


AQA: Paper 2 Question 2 Revision

AQA: Paper 2 Question 2

This page will provide some top tips for Question 2 in Paper 2.

Here, you will find out:

  • The format of the question
  • How to approach answering the question
  • The Assessment Objective (AO) of the question
  • A snippet of a model answer demonstrating what is expected of you

Assessment Objective (AO)

Question 2 is also covered by AO1.

For AO1, you are required to:

  • Identify and interpret explicit and implicit information and ideas
  • Select and synthesise evidence from different texts.



Well, what does this mean exactly?

Explicit information is the information which is directly stated in the source.

Implicit information is the message that the writer is trying to convey, but it is not directly stated in the source.


Unlike Question 1, you will be assessed on both bullet points in the AO for Question 2. The second bullet point means that you will need to carefully select relevant evidence from each text to support your points.




Question Format

Question 2 is designed to test your ability to draw patterns between two different texts.

These texts will be in different formats, and from different centuries.

Here is an example of the type of question you can expect to see in your exam!



Key terms in Question 2

In Question 2, you will be asked to refer to the whole of Source A, and the whole of Source B, so make the most of them!

Now, you will be given a particular topic to talk about which has been underlined. Here, it is about the way in which memories affect childhood.

This question is also asking for similarities, so make sure you don’t talk about the differences!

It is important to explore common themes and ideas equally across both texts.

Remember to support your points with details (evidence) from Source A and Source B.


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Phrasing of Questions

As we have seen so far, Question 2 asks you to refer to both source texts.

However, the phrasing of questions can differ

For example, in this image above, it is asking you for differences based on the authors’ viewpoints, whereas previously, it was asking for similarities.

Despite being phrased differently, the question will always be assessed based on AO1:

  • Identify and interpret explicit and implicit information and ideas
  • Select and synthesise evidence from different texts.





As this question is only 8 marks, it is recommended that you don’t spend too much time on it. 

If you spend more than 10 minutes writing this answer, you will have less time to answer the higher mark questions.

Remember to allow 15 minutes at the start to flick through the questions and read the sources beforehand in order to get a good start.

Q2 = usually takes students around 10 minutes to complete




How to Approach the Question


It can be daunting to start answering a question that requires an analysis of two texts.

However, it is important that you know how to approach it.

You can start by scanning the texts for keywords provided in the question, and highlight or underline them to come back to in more depth. This will help construct your argument.

Once both texts are annotated, you can start to group patterns together, depending on what the question is asking you for.

This can be done by using PEEL paragraphs


Point = What is your overall point?

Evidence = Can you support it with evidence from the texts?

Explanation = What effect does this have on the reader and the text as a whole?

Link = How does this point relate back to the question?


Use this structure in your answer in order for your writing to make logical sense

Remember, you need to use both texts of equal weight in your answer, so make sure you don’t just focus on one!




Example: Extract from a Model Answer

Below is an example question followed by a snippet from a model answer which provides an idea of what you will need to include:


‘You need to refer to Source A and Source B in this question.

Both texts explore the way in which a healthy lifestyle is important.

Use details from both sources to writer a summary of what you understand about these similarities.’

(8 marks)


Why is this a good answer?


  • The PEEL paragraph technique is used to convey information clearly.
  • The quotes included are short and relevant, and integrated well into sentences.
  • The overall effect is given and similarities are correctly identified.
  • Both texts are addressed equally.


Note: You will need to include a lot more detail than this – it’s only a snippet!



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